In the study, people who regularly drank moderate amounts of coffee daily–less than 5 cups per day–experienced lower risk of deaths from cardiovascular disease, neurological diseases, Type 2 diabetes and suicide.
The benefit held true for drinking caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee, suggesting it is not just the caffeine providing health perks but possibly the naturally occurring chemical compounds in the coffee beans.
“Bioactive compounds in coffee reduce insulin resistance and systematic inflammation,” said Ming Ding, the study’s first author. “They might be responsible for the inverse association between coffee and mortality,” Ding added.
In general, people who frequently drank coffee were more likely to smoke and drink alcohol. To separate the effects of coffee from smoking, researchers repeated their analysis among never-smokers, and found that the protective benefits of coffee on deaths became even more evident.